Consumers Will Pay Heavy Fines DOJ Laid on Poultry Packers

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The Department of Justice is so certain that their case against the poultry industry is totally air tight that the lawsuit comes with one of those options to pay the fine now and avoid all the hassles. The companies are about to pass the $84.8 million restitution settlement straight to consumers in the prices.

Poultry case bad for consumers

Overworked, underpaid and abused poultry workers aren’t sure if they won or lost this court case. If the DOJ wins, the guaranteed loser is the consumer.

Workers may get a settlement for the past abuse, along with a pink slip saying they are laid off because nobody can afford to buy chicken. Even if they could, the company can’t afford to pay decent wages or provide the best of working conditions.

The lawsuit filed by the Department of Justice on Monday, July 25, names “some of the largest poultry producers in the U.S.” The paperwork came with one of those cracker jack surprises. A “proposed settlement seeking to end what it claims have been longstanding deceptive and abusive practices for workers.

It seems that the big chicken producers conspired between themselves to keep wages at rock bottom for years. Cargill, Sanderson Farms and Wayne Farms were named in the suit, which was filed in Maryland federal court. Also named as a defendant is a data consulting company known as Webber, Meng, Sahl and Company. Their president is named individually, as well.

The multiyear conspiracy, prosecutors allege, was a scheme to “exchange information about the wages and benefits of workers at poultry processing plants to drive down employee competition in the marketplace.

The defendant consultants “helped to share the information about the workers’ compensation with the companies and their executives.” That’s just the beginning. “The companies were able to compete less intensely for workers and reduce the amount of money and benefits they had to offer their employees.

Across the board

What the big players did, the government argues, amounts to “suppressing competition for poultry processing workers across the board.” Between them, the named producers hire about 90% of all the chicken processing workers in America.

The DOJ is cracking down on antitrust schemes. It gives them something to do that isn’t controversial and away from investigating touchy subjects like Hunter Biden’s laptop.

According to Doha Mekki, the principal deputy assistant attorney general for the Justice Department’s antitrust division, “through a brazen scheme to exchange wage and benefit information, these poultry processors stifled competition and harmed a generation of plant workers who face demanding and sometimes dangerous conditions to earn a living.” They will soon be out of a job completely.

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The “settlement that would require the companies to pay $84.8 million in restitution for workers who were harmed by the unlawful information sharing network.

Along with funding some of Joe Biden’s useless schemes, the settlement “would also put in place a federal monitor selected by the Justice Department who would ensure compliance for the next decade.” Kind of like that guy who was supposed to get Hank Reardon to make more of his magic metal in Atlas Shrugged.

The consent decree also would permit Justice Department lawyers and investigators to inspect the poultry processors’ facilities and interview their employees to ensure they are complying with the terms, according to court documents.

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